Friday, February 29, 2008

Excuse me while I go off on a long rant about cross-over, Charlotte Church, Kiri te Kanawa, and other things...

I briefly mentioned Dame Kiri te Kanawa's small tantrum and "attack" of "opera fakes." Well now the opera fakes are fighting back!!!!! Some of it made me laugh. "Katherine (Jenkins) is looking forward to singing without a microphone in future?" "A mezzo's voice doesn't develop until she's in her early 30's?" Oh, and that's just the start! My personal favorite is: “Appreciating opera is a bit like appreciating a fine wine, sometimes you have to start with something a little light and fruity and eventually you get to your big fat burgundy.” Big...fat...burgundy? *puts hand on hip* Excuse me, who could you possibly be referring to?
They also call the crossover, popera, whatever you want to call it an "introduction" to classical music or opera. It's not. It's a substitution. Unfortunately, it is too often a substitution for opera. Do you know how many people have come up to me and said, "Oh you like opera. So, that's like Paul Potts, Charlotte Church, and Josh Groban, right?" I resisted the urge to tear out my hair. NO, THAT'S NOT WHAT IT'S LIKE.
“I can tell you now, Kiri and Pavarotti and those international singers, if it wasn’t for their compilation CDs they’d be lucky to sell in the hundreds. Now that’s the truth.”
That's another GREAT quote by "Gray Bartlett, who put Westenra on the musical map." He went on to add that Dame Kiri, THE DAME KIRI, might be jealous of the young artist's success. About the quote, who do these people think they are? Pavarotti and Kiri not singing records because the records aren't cross over? On what planet is that true? And Dame Kiri being jealous? DAME KIRI OWNS YOU. She does, really, she secretly runs the world. Why would she have any reason to be jealous of Hayley somethingorother.
I'm sorry if I seem mean or "snobbish" but these people should be jealous of KIRI, not the other way around. Just because Kiri had the determination and heart to go through years of training and those other singers evidently didn't doesn't make her a snob. This article and the "career highlights" or "mini-bio" that come at the end of the article are obviously biased and put Dame Kiri in a very unflattering light.

Dame Kiri owns the world. She rules the world. She is the world. Duh. She's amazing and everyone knows it. Her words were blunt and probably hurtful, but they were studded with truth. They may not be fake SINGERS but they are certainly fake OPERA singers. Listen to Charlotte Church's or Hayley Westenra's "O Mio Babbino Caro" and then listen to Kiri te Kanawa's and I dare you to tell me I'm wrong. They're not in the same league. They never will be. THAT'S WHY Dame Kiri was an OPERA star. She was not a popera star. These people need to get a grip and remember why exactly they are singing in halls and not in opera houses.

Happy Listening!!! =)

Oh my gosh, I'm so mean.

Thursday, February 28, 2008

The Seige of the Italian Barber in Algiers...etc. etc.

*******CORRECTION!!!!!! OOPS! It turns out Rossini's birthday is 2/29/08 not 2/28/08. It was written that way on the Met calendar probably so they could put it on the calendar every year. Sorry, everyone!

It doesn't hurt that Rossini wrote at least 30 operas so we will not be lacking in material for his birthday tribute.

The Barber...
The Siege...
The Italian Girl...
William Tell...
Figaro Figaro FIGARO...

The rest of his operas are too obscure to find! Haha! Just kidding. Search for your favorite on youtube it's sure to be there!!!!

Happy Listening!!! =)

Wednesday, February 27, 2008

Happy Happy Birthday from All of Us to YOU! We Wish You A Happy Birthday So We Can Party Too. HEY!

Because when we're too lazy to sing "Happy Birthday" that's what we say at my school. It's fun to see who can say it the fastest.

We have a couple of birthdays today...

Enrico Caruso is considered by many to be the greatest tenor who ever lived. Possibly, the greatest opera singer who ever lived. He is certainly one of the most famous and listening to his records there is no doubt as to why.
Lotte Lehmann is one soprano I don't know too much about. What I do know is that I constantly hear her name mentioned when there is talk of great sopranos. What I have heard from her thanks to youtube has been wonderful. Happy Birthday!
Mirella Freni is one of my favorite sopranos and one of the first sopranos I ever heard about. (Thank you, Grandpa!) I have a number of recordings and videos of her and I can't get enough. She's just so wonderful.

Happy Birthday to our birthday singers!

Happy Listening!!!! =)

Tuesday, February 26, 2008


Thanks to two amazing friends, the best godfather ever, and Standing Room I will BE ABLE TO SEE RENEE IN OTELLO (this Saturday) and ALSO see Olga Borodina in Carmen that SAME EVENING.

It's too complicated to explain how it all came about. It makes my brain hurt. *ow*

That Saturday will consist of countless subway rides, one rushed lunch, a quick phone call to the Met, and one tired chickie at the end of the night. (Not necessarily in that exact order.) It will somehow all get done and I will be blogging from my cell phone (um, that's not a promise!) during the Otello intermissions, but will have a full review of the Carmen hopefully the next day.

I just have to say again that my two best friends are REALLY the BEST friends an opera buff like me could ask for and that my super amazing and totally cool godfather is, well, super amazing, totally cool, and, might I add, molto bello!!!!! =) lol

Happy Listening!!! =)

PS. To those of you that kept telling me to get Standing Room tickets, thank you as well because if everyone had not insisted then I probably wouldn't have fought as hard! Thanks! <3

Sunday, February 24, 2008

Scotto, Handel, and Other Ramblings

I was too distracted yesterday (unpacking and all that) to remember that it was Handel's birthday! So here's a late birthday greeting (I'm too tired to be creative):

Hallelujah Chorus from the Messiah
One of my favorite parts of the Messiah: "There were Shepherd's..." I like Kiri singing this better, but youtube doesn't have it so, sorry!
The ever delicious "Ombra mai fu" arguably the most beautiful piece of music written for the human voice. And here are some other wonderful renditions.
Beverly Sills singing "Da tempeste" from Guilio Cesare.
Of course, Handel wrote so many operas its impossible to do them all justice here, and we must move on!

Today is the birthday of legendary soprano Renata Scotto!!!!
The final scene from Suor Angelica
"O Mio Babbino Caro"
The Lucia duet with Carlo Bergonzi
The famous yell during Luisa Miller
"Addio del Passato"

Other News:
While flipping through the NY Times Arts Section I saw an AD for a Kathleen Battle recital at Carnegie Hall. I was rather taken aback, not having heard from her in a while. Then I remembered "Oh, Carnegie Hall does not count as Lincoln Center." So she is fully permitted to step on that soil. She looks great in the picture, might I add, and I'm very curious to find out how it goes. Hm...

Happy Listening!!! =)

Saturday, February 23, 2008

I'm Back from Vacation

And I am VERY disappointed in you people!!! I've been gone since Monday and there have been no scandals, firings, pregnancies, breakups, tantrums (well there was Kiri's, but that was very small), extravagant deaths, or anything worth of a big headline this whole week! No one could create anything to keep me interested when I came back?
Well, I got the good news that JDF is completely recovered, so I can stop sweating over "Fille."

Here's my opera news for the week:

Old news: The Callas "Tosca" is amazing. If you don't have it, buy it, listen, and worship.

News: I bought the book "The Story of Manon Lescaut" from an "old and rare books" store in the little town I was staying in. I'm very excited. I feel very professional.

It's not much, so how do you think I felt?

Happy Listening!!!! =)

Sunday, February 17, 2008

Winter Break!!!!!!

After having successfully importing the Maria Callas "Tosca" onto my iPod I believe I'm all ready to go on a 5 day vacation. We're going up to Vermont (no, we don't ski, so don't ask) where there is no cell phone service, no land line, and no computer. Naturally, you won't be hearing from me for a while. So enjoy your week off (if you even get a week off for winter break) and Happy early President's Day!!!

Happy Listening!!!! =)

Saturday, February 16, 2008

Manon Lescaut non mi chiama

Since none of my friends wanted to spend the day watching an opera in a movie theater with me, I'm going to see the New York City Ballet with me friend instead. I feel terrible about missing Manon Lescaut, but it'll be on PBS. That's always my excuse "Eh, it'll be on PBS anyway." Hm...

Happy Listening!!! =)

PS. I decided on "Fille" but I'm BEGGING my parents for Standing Room tickets to "Othello." I'm close to an agreement.

Thursday, February 14, 2008

Opera's Favorite Couples

In honor of Valentine's Day I'm doing a tribute to the great couples of opera. Whether married or not, old or new, or just performing together a lot, we love (most of) these couples to death. Included are my stupid nicknames (made up on the spot!) for all of these lovely singers!

Villazon and Netrebko (Netrebazon)
Fleming and Hvorostovsky (Flemstovsky)
Dessi and Armiliato (Armessi)
Gheorghiu and Alagna (The Matching-Jump-Suit Love Couple)
Natalie Dessay and Juan Diego Florez (Floray)
Pavarotti and Sutherland (Sutherotti)
Millo and Pavarotti (Millotti)
Carreras and Ricciarelli (Carrelli...haha!)
Callas and Di Stefano (Di Callasano)

Those are just some that I could remember off the top of my head. I'm sure I missed a few. Oh, well! Enjoy the love fest!!!

Happy Valentine's Day!!!! =)

Thank You For the Music, The Songs I'm Singin', Thanks for all the Joy Their Bringing, Who Can Live Without It? I Ask In All Honesty....

What would life be? Without a song or a dance what are we? So I say thank you for the music, for giving it to me!

Thank you, Renee, for giving me some of the most beautiful music I've ever heard; for making me laugh and making me cry and making me a completely different person. I never thought it was possible, but you just get better and better as time goes on. Some people don't realize everything that you have given to the opera world and what you have given to people like me.


Renee Fleming:
No. Words.

Happy Listening!!! =)

Monday, February 11, 2008

Don't talk to me about the Grammy Awards....

Because they cause me to bang my head against the wall. And the Pavarotti tribute?????? Opera Chic has a video clip of the tribute... that actually didn't have any real opera singers in it whatsoever. I mean, alright, that's like cool and stuff but like you know all like the other people are all like "Hey look, I'm cultured because there are people singing classical songs into a microphone and stuff."

I'm kidding, but seriously what were with some of the nominations? And some of the winners??????

Okay, okay, Lorraine won one... ONE. And Renee and Anna were both nominated for one and did either win? No.
WHAT IS "TOWER: MADE IN AMERICA" ????????? And why have I never heard of it before?

Don't get me started on the "best opera recording" nominees, loves. That's a whole other story... That will never be told. Sorry!!!

Happy Listening!!! =)

Sunday, February 10, 2008

Queen of the High C's

Of course we're talking about Leontyne Price!!!!
Who else delivers a (soprano) high C like that???? ;-)

We all love her and wish her a HAPPY HAPPY BIRTHDAY!!!!!!! <3333

Happy Listening!!! =)

Thursday, February 7, 2008


My parents gave me an ultimatum:

Renee in Othello


Juan Deigo in Fille

Because I can't go to both? They have to go to one together and they have to choose between those two. Even though I chose "Manon Lescaut" for them to go to they have dinner plans for that night. I'm desperate!!!

My favorite soprano, or my favorite tenor. Let's see.... Hard decision? YES. Once in a lifetime or once in a liftime... Let's weigh the pros and cons. I have been begging to see Renee for some time now and I already saw Juan Diego in "Barbiere" last season. Renee is doing two productions next year. Juan Diego's next NY "Fille" is a few seasons away (but stillllll). Pros... cons.... Still can't decide!

Does anyone have any idea what I should do??? Please help me!!!

Happy Listening!!! =)

Wednesday, February 6, 2008

CaroNome ranted

Props to La Cieca for the sick new format and the really cool idea of finding your "birth opera." It's really fun.
One thing that caught my eye was, when I commented with my birth opera it said "CaroNome ranted:..." and then the comment. I looked around and it would say "soandso retorted" "thisperson insisted" and I thought it was so funny.
Mine is very appropriate though because I rant... A LOT. Way too much, in fact.

Happy Listening =)

PS. I completely ignored Jussi's birthday yesterday (OOPS) so I'll say it now: HAPPY BIRTHDAY!!!!

Monday, February 4, 2008

Awwwwww BABY!!!!!

As a little foot note to the post about Anna Netrebko's upcoming wedding to Erwin Schrott...


That's right, darlings, Anna and Erwin (Erna? Anwin? Netrott? TomKat?) are expecting their first child!!! Congrats to them both, this is gonna be the most anxiously awaited baby since, well, TomKat's kid. All I have to say is that kid is gonna be GORGEOUS! I mean, LOOK AT THE PARENTS!!! gorrrrrgeous!
THIS is big news. HUGE, in fact.


Am I getting mean???? O:-)

UPDATE: Anna has cancelled ALL her Met Lucia's this fall. My mother is devistated!!!! She's the real Anna fanatic in this house (every house needs one!) and she didn't see Lucia this season just so she could see Anna next season. OOPS. Sorry to everyone who was looking forward to it... Oh wait... Oh no! I was looking forward to it!!!!!!!

Happy Listening!!! =)

Sunday, February 3, 2008

I'm Not One for Spreading Rumors...

I've just been informed that Anna Netrebko and Erwin Schrott are getting married! They're "officially engaged" and will decide on a wedding date within the year. Psh, Anna's just lucky he didn't see me first. =( Or maybe I'm just unlucky that I didn't get to him first.
Whatever the case is, I wish them well!!! =)

Happy Listening!! =)

Saturday, February 2, 2008

2/3 of the "Tudor Queens" are Coming to the Met!

With whispers of Beverly Sills in the air the Metropolitan Opera announced that it would only stage two of Donizetti's three "Tudor Queens." Anna Netrebko is to star in "Anna Bolena" for the opening night of the 2011-12 season, while Joyce DiDonato is to portray Mary, Queen of Scots in "Maria Stuarda" in the 2012-13 season.

"There is no singer around today who can sing it," says Peter Gelb of Donizetti's third queen, Elisabetta, from "Roberto Devereux." It's too bad because there are a few singers who I would like to see in the final scene. However, I'm looking forward to Joyce DiDonato's Maria Stuarda after hearing her Elizabeth.

No comments on Netrebko's bel canto abilities until after her Met "Lucia." I don't want to be shown up. Now that would just be embarassing! =P

Happy Listening!! =)

Psst- We're Pretending this was posted yesterday!

Dear Renata,

Thank you for being one of the most amazing sopranos who ever lived. If only more sopranos sounded half as good as you do. We love you!

Happy Birthday!